So I sort of volunteered for this big project at school, and I have to put on my big girl boots and get things done. There are a few things I need to keep in mind while I do this–and the more I think about it, the more they apply to writing as well, so here goes:
- Have a plan.
It doesn’t have to be detailed down to the tiniest molecule, but a rough outline of where you’re going never hurt anyone. Having a direction lets you know where to go from here–and even if that focus shifts a little to the left, don’t worry! This is a plan, not a monument carved into stone. Plans change. But you should still have one.
2. Follow your plan.
Yeah, yeah, I know I just said to change the plan as you go, but that doesn’t mean that you create a plan just for the sake of it and then run headlong down a different corridor altogether. Use your plan as intended. Don’t use it as a way to make yourself feel better about having a plan and then completely ignoring your wonderful big picture and wandering around for the next few weeks or months or however long your project is going to take.
3. Just do it.
Nike was really onto something with this. It seems obvious. Well, of course you’re going to do the thing! Why wouldn’t you? Would you like me to answer that for you? Hmm, let’s see…life? Work? Family? Wanting to curl up on the couch with a loved one instead of working on the project? Needing to go grocery shopping instead of working on your project? Deciding to see those friends you haven’t seen in forever instead of working on your project? Sitting down to work on your project and then deciding that you know, you haven’t really cleaned the bathtub as it should be cleaned in a while, have you? Why not re-organize the garage while you’re at it? The project can wait. It will be there. And that’s the problem, right? The project will wait! And wait. And wait. Langston Hughes had something to say about “Dreams Deferred”and he was onto something. Don’t let your project shrivel up like a raisin in the sun. Do it.
I could add more wonderful things here like time management and making small deadlines, but really, instead of typing this, I should be working on that project. I’m going to take my own advice and just go do it.